Azad Ellafi

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Hey, my name is Azad Ellafi. I'm currently a CS student and I have an interest in philosophy. I hope to eventually start working in alignment. I've been into EA for a while but only recently started to explore the community aspect. Nice to meet you all.


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I've always viewed burden of proof as a dialectical tool. To say one has the burden proof is to say that if they meet the following set of necessary and jointly sufficient conditions:

1. You've made a claim
2. You're attempting to convince another of the claim.

They have the obligation in the discussion to provide justification for the claim. If (1) isn't the case, then of course you don't have any burden to provide justification. If (2) isn't the case (Say, everyone already agrees with the claim or someone just wants your opinion on something) it's not clear to me you have some obligation to provide justification either.

On this account, it's not like burden of proof talk favors a side. And I'm not sure it implicitly assumes anything or is a conversation stopper. So maybe we can "keep burden of proof talk" by using this construal while also focusing more on explicit discussion of priors. Idk, just a thought I had while reading this.

It seems prima facie plausible to me that interventions that save human lives do not increase utility on net, due to the animal suffering caused by saving human life. Has anyone in the broader EA community looked into this? I'm not strongly committed to this, but I'd be interested in seeing what people have reasoned about this.

Hello everybody, I'm Azad.

I've been into EA for a while but I never explored the community aspect. Since I've decided to go the EAG this year and help volunteer I thought it would be worth being more active on the forums and engage with the community more.


I'm currently a student studying Computer Science. On the side I enjoy reading philosophy papers and books. My introduction into EA was through an Ethics course I took, and I pretty quickly bought it as a moral obligation. From there on I took an interest in AI and animal suffering. Nice to meet you all!